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Hanging Out in Aqaba and Checking out The Bernice Beach Club

They say it doesn't rain this time of year but it rained today

Shack is back to work so we chilling for a couple of days in Aqaba. On Sunday, The Kid did homework by the pool while I read until about 1 pm and after that we went for a walk to buy supplies for the room- the local side for nuts, a shwarma, water and red bull and the tourist side for some beer (you can buy booze here but it has to be bought from stores owned by Christians) to put in the fridge. 

There are actually decent Jordanian wines, again, who knew?

the nuts here are amazing - these nuts taste like smoky bacon chips but we know they aren't actually supposed to taste like bacon. We won't tell

Here in Jordan, your legal documents like birth certificates, marriage certificates and national ID cards are stamped with your religion and only Christians can sell liquor (you must align yourself with a recognized religious even if you are not religious). In Aqaba, liquor stores tend to be on the tourist side of town and since it's a duty free zone, the alcohol is much cheaper than in Petra or Amman. Big hotels can sell alcohol with food and the odd tourist restaurant but outside of that you will be hard pressed to find a glass of wine or beer with your meal. It's actually quite refreshing to be in a touristy place that is devoid of drunk people even if there are times I would kill for an ice cold beer to wash down my falafel. If you really want to see some nice drunken tourists, you can always head over to Rovers, the english pub where all of the British tourists hang out and drink beer and eat fish and chips and pretend that they are not in a middle eastern country.

Bernice Beach Club

would you look at the colour? Look how clear it is, you can see the bottom!

Monday we checked out the Bernice Beach Club. It seems that all of the nicer hotels that don't have their own private beaches have a deal with this place and you can hop on a free shuttle that takes you there and back. In our case we had to pay 7JD per person because they said the movie Shack is working on was given the corporate rate and, therefore, it's not free for us and although I was a bit pissed off about it, once we got there, I was cool with the charge - it's really a nice place.

Because it's so lovely, I  am okay with paying $20 for the two of us to spend the day at the beach since the public beach is not really an option for me as a woman- another reminder that we are still in a conservative Muslim country. It's easy to forget that sometimes.

Have you ever noticed how irate people get over stuff like having a big bottle of water confiscated? This place won't let you bring in ANYTHING to eat or drink to force you to spend your tourist dollars on their over priced food and beverages, much like Canada's Wonderland etc but there are no drinking fountains or anything here. You either cough up a few bucks for a small bottle of water or die of dehydration and the people in front of us were FREAKING OUT.

I do think it would go a long way, PR wise, to allow people at least one bottle of water in their bag, but, whatever. It's a nice facility, cleaner than the public beach ( they do love their litter lol) and I can wear a bathing suit and show off my old lady bat wing arms. Woot!

I do wish I had been told to bring water shoes though- the beach is all rocky and rough and it looked like the bottom of the sea was rocky all the way out. If we go back another day we will have to get some shoes but the water was warm and clear as a bell. I would like to try again since today was uncharacteristically overcast and cool so neither of us really wanted to swim despite the warm, inviting waters of the Red Sea. I thought it didn't rain in the desert?  

I think we will just chill for the next couple of days and then Wednesday the two of us are off on another adventure. I booked us on a day trip to Faroun Island (Pharaoh Island) in the Red Sea just off the coast of Egypt and we are pretty stoked. We had to leave our passports so the tour group could take care of the Egyptian visas needed but they don't entitle us to enter the mainland,  only the island, which is just off shore. 

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